Pakistan will launch first Islamic bond in January: Aziz
KARACHI: Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz said on Friday that Pakistan would launch its first sakook (Islamic bond) in January, following the improvement of the country’s rating in the international markets.
Addressing Top Companies Award 2002-03 of the Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE) at Governor’s House, the prime minister said: “Standard and Poor just upgraded Pakistan’s rating, and that allows us access to the international capital market at even lower pricing.”
“Next year in January we are going for a sakook, an Islamic bond, which is for Islamic investors all over the world and later at the end of the year we will go for a euro bond.” “That will ensure Pakistan’s presence in the international capital markets and will ensure that we have adequate access to funds to meet our development needs,” he said. However, did not give the volume of the bond, nor the exact date.
He said: “We are the first country in the history of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) which has gone from the Poverty Reduction Growth Fund programme directly to the international capital market.
The prime minister said that Pakistan has been implementing a series of reforms in the last five years through the SECP to improve Pakistan’s capital market. “But there is still room to improve and grow,” Mr Aziz said.
He said Pakistan wanted Assist Management Business in Pakistan to grow, “and we have made some progress.” The prime minister said “our vision is for a vibrant country playing a major important role in the world. “We want peace with everybody, particularly our neighbours, particularly with India,” he said. During his recent visit to India, “we had excellent discussion with their business community, the leadership and all members of the civil society,” he said.
“We want to settle all disputes, including the Jammu and Kashmir issue, in line with the aspirations of the people through peaceful dialogue, and I think there is a lot of interest on both sides to go through a serious of confidence-building measures, which we are taking step by step,” Mr Aziz said.
“We expect all issues will be settled through this process, so that South Asia, which has the best human capital in this part of the world, can use its full potential,” the prime minister said. “We need to settle our differences, but there we have to do it in line with the aspirations of the two countries,” Mr Aziz said.
The prime minister said Pakistan’s trade relationship with China was rapidly growing, while it has a trade surplus of more than a billion dollars with Afghanistan this year.He said “We are working to lay gas pipelines with Iran, Turkmenistan and Afghanistan, as the country’s economy cannot grow without it”.
Earlier, Arif Habib, the chairman of the KSE, said companies controlled and managed by the government should be listed as soon as possible on stock exchanges, which he said would add to market capitalisation.
The prime minister distributed Top Company awards to Unilever Pakistan Ltd, Shell Pakistan Limited, Javed Omer Vohra & Company Limited, Siemens (Pakistan) Engineering Company Ltd, Rafhan Maize Products company Ltd, Al-Ghazi Tractors Ltd, Arif Habib Securities Ltd, Engro Chemicals Pakistan Limited, Clariant Pakistan Ltd, the Hub Power Company Ltd, Fauji Fertilizer Company Ltd, Pakistan State Oil, Nesle Milkpak Ltd, Century Paper and Board Mills Ltd, Pakistan Oilfields Ltd, International Industries Ltd, Security Papers Ltd, Lakson Tobacco Company Ltd, Pakistan Refinery Ltd, Thal Ltd, Packages Ltd, BOC Pakistan Ltd, Treet Corporation Ltd, Faysal Bank Ltd and National Refinery Ltd.